Still not actively playing, but the 5.1 changes have stirred my theorycrafters’ heart, so let’s take a look. :) (Much love to wowhead for compiling all this so I can just cut and paste.)
- Spear Hand Strike now costs 10 energy (was 30).
Nice change for Windwalkers here. Previously, you had to slow DPS to ensure you’d have enough energy to interrupt; now, you don’t need to worry.
- The energy costs of Legacy of the Emperor, and Legacy of the White Tiger have been reduced to 20, down from 50.
- The energy cost of Healing Sphere has been reduced to 40, down from 60.
- The healing provided by the Healing Sphere base spell has been increased by 20%.
Healing Sphere still doesn’t put out enough healing to be significant for non-mistweavers, but it’s now significantly easier to heal yourself now if you’re not talented into Zen Sphere.
- The healing provided by Chi Burst and Chi Wave has been reduced by 25%.
- The healing provided when detonating Zen Sphere has been reduced by 25%.
This hurts Mistweavers the most; WW and BM mostly use it for self-healing, so the HS buff helps there, but Mistweaver AoE took a hit across the board (see below).
- The Tiger Power provided by Tiger Palm now reduces target armor by 30% with a single application and no longer stacks.
No more stacking, yay! This doesn’t really affect Brewmasters at all (TP remains filler) but it definitely helps Windwalker ramp-up time, and even helps Mistweavers do some Eminence healing if they choose. (I’m 99% sure that the wording here is just bad; you don’t actually reduce the target’s armor, you just reduce the target’s armor effectiveness against your attacks.)
- Stance of the Fierce Tiger now increases the Monk’s movement speed by 10% in addition to its other effects. This movement speed increase stacks with other effects.
Monks didn’t really need a speed boost, but I’ll take it.
- The Power Strikes talent now grants the Power Strikes effect every 20 seconds, which causes the Monk’s next attack to generate 1 additional Chi.
The Wowhead wording appears wrong here. The duration of PS hasn’t changed, but now it can be triggered by Jab, Crackling Jade Lightning, or Soothing Mist. Moreover, you also now have a visible buff that pops up every 20 seconds, so it’s easier to plan around.
What’s more interesting, though, is the Ascension change, which isn’t mentioned in the notes at all. Ascension now grants +15% energy/mana regen in addition to the max Chi boost, making it a much more attractive talent. For Windwalkers, some napkin math shows that it’s still inferior to PS or CB, but only if you can trigger those abilities on cooldown. If your PS usage is around 2/min (or CB slips to every 2 min instead of 90 sec) then Ascension will win out. Brewmaster and Mistweaver optimization will take a bit more in-depth theorycraft.
- The Healing Elixirs talent now grants the Healing Elixirs effect every 18 seconds, which causes the next Brew or Tea consumed to heal the Monk for 10% of maximum health.
Nerfed from 15 seconds. Not entirely sure why, wasn’t really a desired talent in the first place.
Mistweaver specific stuff:
- Renewing Mist now travels to 2 additional targets (was 3 targets).
Ouch, that’s a big AoE healing nerf, which only serves to make the spell even more frustrating.
- All healing spells which cost mana have had their mana cost increased by 10%.
- You now have a chance equal to your crit chance to generate double the amount of Mana Tea charges.
The second change helps compensate somewhat for the first. More evidence to stack crit, apparently.
- Enveloping Mist is now available at level 16, down from level 34.
MMOC has this listead as getting a 32% nerf, which appears wrong; probably just an artifact of the spell being available at an earlier level.
- The mana cost of Soothing Mist has been reduced by 33%.
- Haste for Mistweavers is now 50% more effective through Stance of the Wise Serpent
- The chance to generate 1 Chi while channeling Soothing Mist and Crackling Jade Lightning has increased to 35%, up from 25%.
These changes suggest they’re really trying to push the use of Soothing Mist more; it did need a buff, as it was nearly outperformed by Eminence healing from CJL in its previous incarnation.
Feel free to share your comments! I’ll probably be digging into the new Patch 5.1 content in the next few weeks…I’m in no hurry, as I’ve still got ACIII and BL2 that I’m working through.